It’s Finally Here!

I bet you can’t guess what we will be doing once these hot and humid days are gone! Two dump trucks full of mulch (14 cubic yards) and more than three months after ordering it, I finally got my mulch. I contacted the place that delivered this in early May. When they didn’t bother delivering or calling me back I called another supplier. They didn’t answer their phone or bother to call me back so I called a third place and they wouldn’t answer their phone either.

Isn’t it sad that these businesses have nobody to work for them and they are unable to even answer a phone let alone provide a service. When I was young and working, we were told the customer is always right, a phone never rang more than twice and it never went to the recorder (Yes we had recorders back then).

We had some work done on our foundation and the contractor told me we have to wait almost two months to get the driveway concreted even though the actual problem has been repaired. I haven’t paid for the concrete yet so I called a concrete company 2 miles down the road from us and they never answered the phone or bothered to call me back. I called another contractor that does concrete work and he told me the job was too small and if I have other concrete work to do he will look at it. He told me it would cost $2,000.00 to concrete this! It will be under $700.00 from my original contractor, so he obviously didn’t want the job and wanted to blow me off by the outrageous price. So I give up, they win and I will wait until mid September to get it concreted (If it doesn’t rain that day) the same as I waited for the mulch.

Image from Red Lobster website.

My husband took me to Red Lobster for my birthday in May. They only had about 10 tables filled with customers and they said it would be a 15 minute wait and as soon as somebody left we could have their table. We sat down and the waitress said to be patient because she was the only waitress. We assured her we weren’t in a hurry. We ordered the Lobster Pizza appetizer and it was delicious. She brought the garlic biscuits and I asked for a plate. She told us there are no clean plates and there is nobody to wash them because everyone quit and that we have to use a napkin. She said there were two managers doing the cooking, which is why the biscuits were so terrible that we pushed them to the side. We eat here frequently and know how the food tastes, normally. What we were served was not their normal and I don’t know if I will ever go back.

We live in a tourist area and every business has help wanted signs and most restaurants have closed or they have closed the inside service, only offering pick up or drive thru food.

Is this happening where you live? Please tell me what you are going through and how businesses have changed where you live.

Are you on the other side of this and have a business that is having trouble keeping employees? Let’s hear your side of these difficult times. I am sure it is more frustrating for you than it is for the customers. I feel so bad for all business owners.

Categories: My Garden, Uncategorized


  1. How frustrating!! You would have thought folk would be glad of the business!
    It has been very hard to get tradesmen to visit here too or to even pin them to a firm date. As for the stores, there are many locally that have been forced to close – either because they couldn’t survive on the very tightly focused government assistance or have died through want of customers. It’s going to take years to recover! 🙁

  2. Yes, we are also dealing with this issue here in Ontario. Because of the CERB payment that people have been getting from the government, they are not in a hurry to get back to work. I think there needs to be a way to report that they were offered their job back and refused. On the other hand, if they have kids at home to look after, or are in a position where there is a risk of getting sick, I can see that side. Oh my, when will things get back to a more normal life???

    • The government payments here have caused the same issues. My brother told me he makes more now than when he actually worked. It was a wonderful thing when the people lost their jobs but not now when businesses can’t get any help. I agree, I am ready to get back to normal too Carla.

  3. This is not just with you it seems a world problem. I ordered digger and man to level a field for gardens extension. Been waiting and put off now 5 months .I cant put up deer fence until all rocks for water fall are inserted on site and so if deer again use my hard work as salad bar the digger driver will have my bill for damage. I am that upset about lazy sods. My sister in England says on order 4 month a outside kitchen builder who said start on one date and never rang to say sorry when he failed on promise. Came last week to strat and found another chap had built the lot while he had pratted about

  4. Hi Diane. My husband and I are SICK of chasing our big dogs when the escape out of the front door, the backyard is fenced, not the front.

    Anyhoo, pre-pandemic we could have fenced all 5 acres for $10,000. We have to pay $7,000 for a VERY small area. It took a month to get someone to answer the phone, and a month to get a site inspection and estimate. We decided to bite the bullet and fence in the front of our house. Three months later we are only a week away to keep the dogs in while paying through the nose.

    Restaurants: I worked in food and beverage from 13 years old until I semi-retired 4 years ago to care for my 96 year old mom. So I understand F & B better than most.

    My daughter ‘was’ a food server at a swanky hotel in downtown Denver. They are a subsidiary of a major Hotel chain. To make up for money lost during the pandemic, once open, they worked with insanely minimal staff.

    Managers worked as bartenders, hostess, bussers, food runners and even did the valet parking!

    My daughter would have to explain why she was alone, doing 6 jobs. To cut back on waist they stopped serving bread, desserts, and many menu items.

    Many servers broke under the pressure and quit the restaurant business never to return. Same with chefs asked to work 15 hour days ( or more) and no days off for months. All to save owners money. Executive Chefs quit along with managers.

    I still have nightmares about my experiences over a 40 year career. If I ever had to find work I would NEVER return to that industry. And that was back in the good ok’ days!

    Remember that depressing movie , “ They Shoot Horses Don’t They?” That reminds me of how many managers treat staff and the way owners treat managers. Seems your choice is burn out, loose your sanity or have a stroke.

    At one point I was working so many hours snd wearing so many hats (in my management position ) I increased my life insurance because I was certain the job would kill me.

    I quit before that happened.

    Thanks for listening ❤️

    On Sun, Aug 22, 2021 at 7:49 AM In Dianes Kitchen wrote:

    > indianeskitchen posted: ” I bet you can’t guess what we will be doing once > these hot and humid days are gone! Two dump trucks full of mulch (14 cubic > yards) and more than three months after ordering it, I finally got my > mulch. I contacted the place that delivered this in earl” >

    • And then you have customers that don’t understand any of that and they treat the wait staff like crap and are not leaving good tips. With all this devastation I pray that people in any job that pays practically nothing and that are forced to work under conditions like you stated start getting better pay and treated better! Thank you for your eye opening comment that most of us never knew!

  5. Diane, here in Canada, not only the resto business is affected but also other types of businesses. A large part of it is because of COVID-19 which drastically changed everything . The Canadian govt here introduced CERB(Canada Emergency Response Benefit) as financial support for all employed and self-employed folks affected by COVID-19. Initially, it was to be available for a certain period of
    time but currently has been extended. Because ofths, some folks feel that they are better off not working since the CERB pay is higher. Job recruitment becomes hard and business owners want the CERB to end. However, the topic of low wages is there and many folks just want to work from home. The discusson goes on..

  6. It’s very sad that business people are least bothered of their customers.The pandemic has changed so many things in different parts of the world.Thank God we are still getting the proper service despite covid.Take care. 🙏🌹

  7. We are also living in a town that thrives on tourism, but it seems somehow restaurants and other businesses are keeping it together. And we’ve been on a few (local) road trips this year and our expectations were always exceeded – I must admit, I’ve expected things to go haywire … maybe we’re just fortunate, because I’ve heard more stories like yours from other people, but have not (yet) experienced it myself.

    • It makes me happy to know not every place is suffering. I think people need to get back to working instead of taking government handouts, but I guess it must be hard turning down free money.

      • Absolutely Diane. I was thinking after I’ve commented on your post, that our town’s economy was quite strong before Covid and maybe that’s the reason why it seems we’re still doing ok … nearby towns (where it wasn’t the case and people are relying on the extra grant from the government, things are not looking that good).

  8. It is very sad how this entire covid stream has disrupted life in our country. Of course walmart, target and especially Amazon, at least for the owners, has thrived greatly.

    • Thank you but it actually was the worse birthday meal I have ever had. This is one of our more expensive restaurants and eating off a napkin was awful. I go there every year for crab legs and they didn’t even have them. I was so disappointed.

  9. Since the pandemic restrictions have eased a bit here in UK I’ve notices a lot of places putting up help wanted signs. Catering, hospitality and building contractors are all struggling to find the staff they need now things are opening more. As a writer I think I’m lucky as I can do everything from home, but it must be so frustrating for businesses when they can’t find the staff they need. Hopefully things will improve more, fingers crossed perhaps that the worst of the pandemic may be past. I have been out for meals a few times in restaurants now they are open but didn’t have to wait too long. I’ve still not been back to the cinema though, don’t feel comfortable yet being in an enclosed space with lots of people. Been enjoying a summer break from blogging during August to spend time with family and make the most of the lovely weather we’ve been enjoying here in the uk ATM 🙂

  10. So sorry to hear of all these problems Diane, I hope both concrete arrives successfully and the restaurants manage to get back to some sort of normality. When I visited Wales (UK) last month, every restaurant in the little town we stayed in needed more staff…

  11. I don’t have a restaurant, but I can see what my friends are going through. They laid off people, they pass out the specials of the day through the windows themselves, which they often eat themselves, because there is no one to sell to. The tragedy of the people.
    Regards, I wish you a return to normal

  12. Admittedly, we couldn’t NOT know this one. We live “out in the county” of Santa Fe – not the city – and we have to pass the county wastewater treatment plant to get to town. So, we just keep an eye on the couple of giant heaps of mulch which is the end result of their processing wastewater from 80,000 people or so in the city.

    When they get big enough – and there’s always a pickup truck around [2 in the driveway, right now, between my father-in-law and me] – they charge us $10 for a heaping truckfull. Just drive-in and a front end loader is there ready and waiting for us. Over and back in 10 minutes this time of year.



    • I think what you call mulch is what we call fertilizer and I would love to get a truck load for $10.00! My mulch is shredded wood and it cost me $700.00 for 2 truck loads with $100 of that the delivery fee! However, I put it down thick and it should last 3 years. Have a fantastic week and thanks for commenting. ❤️

  13. It is happening here in Canada too Diane, but mainly because the government was offering free pandemic pay ($500/week or 2K per month), so why would anyone work, especially if they were part time? They’ve recently cut it back to $300/week, but we have a federal election on Sept. 20 so they didn’t stop it altogether as the Liberals are trying to buy votes. It may have been necessary earlier in the pandemic and during lockdowns but now with everything open again, restaurants and businesses can’t find staff. I had to wait 6 weeks for the maid service to send someone to clean my mother’s house after she was vaccinated. Owner said she needed more staff but couldn’t find them. The other issue with renos and stuff, is the owners say they can’t get supplies/parts etc. as so many things are in short supply or on backorder.

    • It’s just a big cycle isn’t it Joni? Image how much debt our governments are encountering still giving out all this money. Our government is doing the same thing. Being retired didn’t help us much. Lol

  14. Wow – what a mess! I’ve not encountered anything like this, but I’ve not been out to eat in ages, nor had landscaping/outside work done since the pandemic began. My friend, however, lives in Honeoye Falls, NY (not far from Rochester, NY). She had the exact same thing happen with her mulch order. She ordered back in May and just had delivered and laid/distributed last week. I see you are healed up and ready to shovel – be careful!

    • Yes healed up but have to be very careful. Hubby started taking cart fulls of the mulch and dumping it in spots in my flower beds. It was so hot but he managed to get 4 carts done. Then I will spread it around after this heat and humidity lets up!

      • Yes be careful! The weatherman says we have two cool days next week, Monday and Tuesday, then hot until September 15th. I’d wait until October if I were you!

  15. That is some pretty crappy customer service you’ve dealt with Diane! And very sad to hear about the local Red Lobster. I think, if you are up for it, you can definitely help bring in the customers. You’ll definitely do better than the managers in the cooking department. 😆

    We are hearing similar stories of restaurant owners have trouble with hiring. There’s even now reports of restaurants offering to pay staff $40 an hour just to work at the restaurant.

    The pandemic has contributed greatly to this, including employee burnout, mental distress, etc. it’s very sad. I hope the restaurant industry can recover!

  16. Where I live too the restaurants have went down hill. I cannot say that I have had anything truly and completely satisfying to my mouth or belly since February 2020. My household is still quarantining for the most part only going out for work, food and supplies. We only do take-out/to-go even for the sit down restaurants….. I have cooked and baked so many new things this last 18 months trying to recreate restaurant food and to make our palette’s happy.

    • Our restaurants are serving people but they are tables apart and have put up plastic shields. It’s just not worth it to me. I’m happy to hear you are cooking and baking new things though!

  17. I don’t know where you live, Diane, but here in Arkansas, it’s mostly business as usual—except for the restaurant business. They are understaffed and are having trouble hiring anyone because people can get more money drawing unemployment than working. Our governor wants to stop the extra unemployment, but the federal government is giving him a hard time about it. Most businesses don’t require masks, but ask customers to wear one if they aren’t fully vaccinated. Covid and how it was handled has done so much harm—in more ways than one—to our country, in fact, the whole world. It’s a shame.

    • It broke my heart the other day listening to my granddaughter talk to her friend about school starting. Telling each other how they wonder if they have to wear masks, when and where in school and how they want to wear a mask but what if other kids don’t. Kids in 5th grade should be talking about better things! I’m ready for this to be over.

  18. It’s crazy especially in construction. Our restaurants are doing very well… we live in a college town here in Pennsylvania so the college kids want to work.

    We still seem to have grocery store shelves not fully stocked. They say it’s due to lack of truckers. However, we were on the highways recently and there were no shortages of trucks.

    It’s crazy… I agree. Good luck to you my friend.

    • You are right there are so many trucks! I heard on the radio that Costco said people are starting to hoard toilet paper again. What is wrong with people! I‘m glad things are somewhat normal there, enjoy the rest of your summer there.

  19. I’ve heard that some restaurants are having trouble getting the products they’re known for — like chicken if their specialty is chicken. It seems I’m hearing that getting deliveries is a bigger problem than finding employees in the Charlotte area. Lots of places have “help wanted” or “hiring now” signs out. New houses and apartments are being built — all sorts of building construction — but then I hear of individuals doing a remodeling project having to wait months for things like kitchen cabinets or appliances. I heard that plywood prices have tripled during the pandemic.

    • I never gave that a thought about the restaurants not being able to get their regular ingredients. That’s probably why our meal at Red Lobster didn’t taste the same. The prices of cars and trucks are said to have increased by up to 40% too. Yesterday my husbands truck died! 😩

  20. That’s to bad that so many business are having trouble find help. I read where the restaurant business was one of the hardest effected by the pandemic. I deleted A LOT and started over… I almost wrote a post instead of a comment… Now I am laughing. I hardly ever eat out but once in a while would be nice. It I don’t feel like cooking because I have been working outside late, I stick something in the oven or microwave. GEEZ! I used to never that… I don’t have AC at the moment (low on refrigerant), so cooking heats the house up as well… I am so glad your mulch came and I hope your husband doesn’t over do it… It is very hot here, upper 90’s… I hope you are yours are doing well. Take care and thanks for the comment!

  21. Sorry for your experience. The other day I went to a Spanish place nearby which my husband and I use to frequent, and all plates were carry-out and the silverware was plastic. The experience was definitely NOT the same. We complained and were told the same, no one to wash dishes. Go figure.

    • It’s so sad but at least they are able to stay open this way. I hate to see businesses close over this. I guess we all have to do what works just to survive the situation.

  22. So frustrating! We’ve been seeing the same thing with delays on getting the house fixed. One of our favorite restaurants closed recently due to nobody showing up to work. It’s ridiculous!

    • It’s is but as long as the government pays these people to sit home why should they work? On a good note maybe the people making minimum wage will get better pay to come back.

  23. Happy for you that your mulch has arrived. I am sad to say that not only restaurants but other places need help badly. Our schools need teachers, there is a shortage of nurses and other medical workers. Many small businesses and some larger ones have closed their doors permanently.

    • This needs to end so we can move on with a normal life! My daughter is a RN ICU critical care nurse caring for Covid patients. This has left an emotional scar on her with so much death and tragedy. Thank you!

      • I agree it needs to end. I will keep your daughter in prayers, bless her for the work she does. My heart hurts for all the nurses and other medical people that are working so hard to help people through this awful pandemic. You will be in my prayers too, I cannot imagine how much you must be concerned about your daughter.

  24. Our world has gone bonkers over a virus that has a cure—two cheap, tested ones, in fact. But doctors are not given the freedom to use them. This is not about science or medicine; it is about power and control. Meanwhile, yes, NM and OK both have problems with people not wanting to work. Hiring signs everywhere.

    • It definitely is a crazy world. I can’t imagine going through this virus as a child. I still remember getting mumps as a child and I thought that was bad so think what the kids today will remember. It’s so sad!

  25. Everything is wanky in our area, no one wants to work, and the poor souls that show up get harassed because they can’t keep up! It’s crazy! My 6 year old granddaughter is wearing a mask all day! It breaks my heart! 💕C

    • I’m ready for this to be over! Now the kids are getting sick too, that really breaks my heart. I feel like they have been robbed of their childhood during this pandemic.

  26. Hey Diane, I just got my Air Fryer, Red of course, and all the special pans and things that go with it. I want to learn how to dehydrate my own fruit, which it does. Do you have any special recipes for my air fryer. I havent done anything yet but look at it lmao Sandy

    • Apples are the only fruit I have dehydrated so far but that was in my huge Excalibur Dehydrator. It took a long time and was very labor intensive but they were delicious. My best advice would be to read the manual and follow it as using a large dehydrator like mine will be different instructions than a smaller one like the air fryer size. Try strawberries if they show you how as that would be easier than the apples were but if you have the time, apples are delicious dehydrated. Kudos on the red, my favorite color too!

Leave a Reply